The weather finally dropped below scorching so we headed out camping for the weekend. Botna Bend Park was the destination this time around. Located in Hancock, Iowa and about 45 minutes from Council Bluffs make this a pretty easy drive. Sitting along the Nishnabotna River and offering fun for the whole family.
There are three campgrounds inside Botna Bend. We stayed in the first campground with great river access and walking distance to a playground. The only negative is the bathroom which I recommend avoiding. Campground number two seemed busier with a great view of the elk, a playground and a shower house that was clean and usable. Campground three sits in the far back and has a shower house.
Two fantastic playgrounds that are clean! These kept the kids busy and both are almost brand new which was great.
Elk and Bison make for fun scenery. They are in pins but watch out for the largest Bison as he likes to give you a thrill by charging the fence.
The Botna Bend Website listed a basketball court…..not so much. There is a volleyball court in campground two that sits in the middle of all the camp sites as well as horse shoe pits in each campground.
You can rent kayaks, tubes, and canoes for daytime fun on the Nishnabotna. There is ramp access in campground one and it got pretty busy in Saturday. The water levels right now were perfect for a little wading and the catfish were really biting.
Nestled back in campground three are some of the neatest trees we have seen. As well as what looks to be the makings of an earthy playground…
Notes if you are heading to Botna Bend:
- Bring your own worms if that is your bait of choice. It isn’t sold anywhere close by.
- Oakland is about 10 minutes away if you need to hit the grocery store, Blimpies, or Dairy Queen.
- There is a small nature trail through Native American Grass, and an archery range.
- You can purchase firewood and fire starters at the campground if needed but we found plenty of fire wood through out the campground that was lying on the ground.
- There are spots for tents, campers, and RVs as well as electrical sites.
- Bring along some carrots to give the Elk’s a nice afternoon treat.